Lawmakers consider making "revenge porn" a crime

7 months 7 hours 46 minutes ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 2:55:00 PM CST February 21, 2018 in News
By: Lydia Nusbaum, KOMU 8 Reporter
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JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri House is leaning toward making it a felony to purposefully send explicit images without consent, also known as "revenge porn."

The Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence said revenge porn can lead to 'unintended consequences.'

Jennifer Carter Dochler, the public policy director for the organization, said people often choose to send a photo to one person, but it ends up in the hands of many others. 

"It's still very harmful. It's now beyond their control and it's having unintended consequences in terms of harassing, bullying behavior," Dochler said. 

She said this type of assault occurs "more frequently than we think." 

Currently 38 states, including Washington D.C., have revenge porn laws, but Missouri is not one of them. 

This bill would make it a class D felony to send nonconsensual images of private sexual photos. 

Rep. Jim Neely, R-Cameron, sponsored the bill, and said there is a lack of respect and regard when someone sends these photos. 

"We all need to put ourselves in other people's shoes," Neely said. "Where's the fairness of somebody who's exploiting another individual, or revenge porn? Why would you do that?" 

Neely said he thinks the House will hear the bill for the third time Thursday, and then send it over to the Senate. 

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